Infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) is a major pathogen in poultry. The genotypes of IBV vary considerably, and their antigenicity may differ. Nationwide surveillance in South Korea was performed to determine the prevalence and distribution of IBV and its genotypes. By both active and passive surveillance, a total of 939 samples were collected and tested for IBV detection by pathogen-specific reverse transcriptase–PCR. IBV RNA-positive samples were inoculated in embryonated eggs for virus isolation. IBV was genotyped and analyzed phylogenetically based on a partial nucleotide sequence of the S1 gene. A total of 114 IBV strains were isolated; 34 (30.9%) of the 110 samples obtained by passive surveillance, and 80 (9.7%) of the 829 samples obtained by active surveillance, were positive. Most IBVs in both groups were isolated from broilers. Five genotypes (QX-like, B4-like, KM91-like, K40/09-like, and 20AD17-like) were observed in South Korea, with the QX-like genotype being the most common, and the 20AD17-like genotype being a novel genotype. These findings will help to maximize protection against IBV infection by providing a reference for the selection of an avian vaccine for IBV in South Korea.

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